Do you know what’s sitting in your driveway? Explaining TAG, High Theft Vehicles and High Theft Surcharges

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Did you know that it takes thieves less than 1 minute to steal a vehicle?

No one wants to have their vehicle stolen; as if the financial stress, disruption of daily routines, and management of unanticipated insurance claims are not enough to deal with, there are added safety concerns that can arise as a result of a theft.

Last year, Ontario saw a 48.3% increase in auto theft in 2022 compared to 2021, which translates to a hefty price tag of $700 million in insurance claims. Watch the progression: In Ontario, thefts rose from 27,527 in 2021 to 37,041 in 2022. This brings the rate for 100,000 people to 245.15. And according to Statistics Canada, 2023 is trending upward beyond 2022 numbers.

As a result, we have noticed that many of our insurer partners have begun offering discounts for clients who install a tracking system in their vehicle, and applying surcharges for those who do not.

Could you be charged more for theft coverage due to the vehicle you drive?

We want to ensure our clients have the most up to date information on trends in the insurance industry so you can make the best decision to protect what matters most to you. As an insurance brokerage that partners with over 30 companies, your Insurance Broker has the knowledge to inform and advise you on your options to ensure you are properly protected.

A focus on theft prevention measures to combat the disturbing increases in vehicle thefts in Canada is swiftly catching wind across the industry. We have observed a trend that a growing number insurance companies have updated their criteria for insuring vehicles that have been identified as ‘high theft’ in the last six months. So, if you insure a vehicle that has been identified as ‘high theft’, chances are you have been notified to install anti-theft tracking technology in your vehicle to avoid extra premium cost.

If you have an insurance policy with any of the following companies, we recommend reaching out to your Broker to talk about next steps:

  • Aviva (Traders, Hagerty, Scottish & York)
  • Intact Insurance
  • Gore Mutual
  • Chubb
  • Economical (Definity) Insurance
  • Nothbridge
  • Wawanesa
How do you know if your vehicle is on the list?

Unfortunately, each insurer has its own list of vehicles and model years subject to surcharges or installation incentives or discounts. However, insurance companies seem to be building their lists around the Top 10 Stolen Vehicles in Canada list compiled every year.

Each year, Equite Association releases a list of the top 10 most stolen vehicles in Canada, categorized per region. Some vehicles on the list include:

–              Lexus RX Series (2016-2021)

–              Honda CR-V (2016-2021)

–              Ford F150 Series (2015-2020)

–              Toyota Highlander (2013-2019)

–              Honda Civic (2016-2021)

Although these lists have and will continue to evolve based on factors such as the type of vehicle you drive and the region where it is located, our Brokers continually receive updates from our insurance partners,  Be sure to talk to your Broker if you are concerned about your vehicle.

How can you help to reduce the chance of a vehicle theft and potential extra premium costs (depending on insurer and type of vehicle)?

The good news is, there are some modern, innovative solutions to this increase in vehicle theft in Ontario now being introduced to drivers, such as vehicle tracking anti-theft devices.

One system that many companies recommend is TAG.

Tag is the leader in stolen vehicle recovery in North America and has been for over a decade. Operating as a vehicle tracking and recovery Bluetooth device, Tag deploys many intricate tactics designed to protect vehicles from theft and provide peace of mind to clients. Tag boasts a higher and quicker recovery rate of stolen vehicles. Some features of Tag devises include:

Real time location: the device tracks the vehicle’s location, aiding in quick recovery if stolen

Tracking devices: multiple, difficult to locate tracking devices are installed throughout your vehicle, so it can be tracked anytime, anywhere in North America.

Prevention:  The company etches a discrete logo on the front driver and passenger side windows of your vehicle, alerting any would be thief that your vehicle is protected by the Tag System. They have observed that this is proven to significantly reduce the instance of theft.

To date, they’ve recovered millions of dollars’ worth of stolen assets through their unique, multi-unit electric identification system. Tag tracking reports that they have deterred 99.82% of vehicle theft over the last decade. While Tag is not the sole technology on the market available to tackle the issue of vehicle theft, it is a tried and true product that has proven to be successful and that our insurer partners believe in.

How Insurance Companies are helping their customers

Many insurance companies are offering discounted rates or a full rebate upon install depending on your insurance provider and the type of vehicle you own. Contact your broker today to find out if you qualify.


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McFarlan Rowlands can help.